Revision– Search for Poetic Prose

My second one-hour Zoom meeting with my cohort instructor, Darien Gee. Monday, two days ago.

I unmuted myself– bid aloha– giddy, gleeful. I had revised the three micros, which Darien had reviewed and commented upon. I’d nailed ‘em. Chest all puffed. Ready for praises.

We spent most of the hour, revising one piece. Of the 257 words I had submitted, Darien (and I?) slashed, changed, deleted, added, rearranged at least 211 words.

Ten minutes before meeting’s end, Darien paused, “Ric, you look downcast, troubled.”

I paused, inhaled, searching for the word, found it, “I’m overwhelmed, Darien.”

***

An hour after our meeting, I received a note of encouragement from Darien, “I want you to know how much I enjoy working with you, speaking with you, and reading your work. I have every confidence in you as a person and as a writer, and I want you to know that.”

I replied, “Dammit, I want to be good. I wanted to be great— right out of the gate. (Don’t we all?) Bottom line truth— I wanted to have a short path to retirement income, so I can quit the job and do what I am loving— quilting and writing.

“Thank you for your honesty. While I might wish to hear platitudes of hoorahs, I do welcome your voice of experience, wisdom and guidance.”

***

I passed the remainder of Monday, all of Tuesday, listening to sad songs on my Pandora station, cuddling with my doggy Heno and filling the room with diffused scent of frankincense. Tears have been elusive. Disappointments too deep for remedy of an easy cry.

***

This morning I revisited a different micro in my manuscript. Took 364 words. Sliced, diced, slashed, reworked, replaced, transformed.

When I began, it was readable. Maybe good? Now, it sings.

Hell, 3 more edits (or 13), it will be poetic prose. Imua. Forward.

Published by Ric d. Stark

New to a post-retirement commitment to literary non-fiction, Ric d. Stark will focus memories on gay life, Hawaiʻi life and Hawaiian quilting.

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